I&T Briefs

On Line Support attains Microsoft Gold Certified status
On Line Support has attained Gold Certified status in the Microsoft Partner Program with competencies in Advanced Infrastructure Solutions and Networking Infrastructures Solutions. As a Gold Certified partner, On Line Support has demonstrated expertise with Microsoft technologies and proven ability to meet customers’ needs, the company said.

On Line Support said it is the first networking technology consultant to attain Gold Certified status in Vancouver.

C-TRAN to unveil solar-powered bus stops
C-TRAN has begun installing solar-powered bus stops, officially called i-STOP. The device lights an area for passengers waiting in the dark and utilize a flashing light to signal approaching buses. With funding provided by a federal grant, C-TRAN has purchased 90 i-STOPs, 50 of which are equipped only with the flashing light to signal approaching buses. A total of 31 units will be installed along Route 4, which is part of C-TRAN’s participation in the Fourth Plain Traffic Safety Project. Sixteen more will be installed along Route 32 on Evergreen Boulevard and Andresen Road. The remaining solar-powered bus stops will be installed on an as-needed basis.

DM2 Software named to President’s Circle for seventh straight year
Vancouver-based DM2 Software, which develops accounting and other business-management software for petroleum distributors nationwide, has been named to Best Software’s distinguished President’s Circle for the seventh consecutive year. The award recognizes the company as a Sage business partner that generated the highest revenue on Sage’s accounting software programs in 2005. Fewer than 50 companies out of more than 3,000 businesses are recognized each year. Additionally, DM2 ranked in the top 10 in MAS 90 product revenues for the fifth straight year.

WD Briefs
Clark College offers home inspection training
Clark College’s Workforce Development & Continuing Education department is offering its first Residential Home Inspection program from Jan. 3 to 27. The program is being run in conjunction with Bellingham Technical College. The program is based on the American Society of Home Inspectors curriculum. Upon completion of the program, participants will be prepared to take the Washington State Pest Examination and the National Home Inspection Examination and receive a Bellingham Technical College certificate. To register, call BTC at 800-318-6911. Classes are held 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday at Clark College. Cost of the program is $3,500.

B&F Briefs
Wells Fargo leading small business lender in Washington
Wells Fargo is the leading small business lender in Washington for the second year in a row, according to the company’s analysis of the most recent federal government data. The 2004 Community Reinvestment Act data also showed that Wells Fargo is the leading small business lender in 18 other states, including Oregon. In Washington, Wells Fargo loaned $363 million to 15,171 businesses in 2004, a 45 percent increase over its 2003 loan volume. Nationwide Wells Fargo extended more than 540,000 loans under $100,000 in 2004, totaling $13.6 billion, 15 percent of the industry total. Additionally, Wells Fargo loaned $83.3 million to 3,250 businesses in 2004 in low and moderate income neighborhoods, a 46 percent increase over its 2003 loan volume.

R&D Briefs
Camas School Board buys land near Grass Valley Park
The Camas School District’s Board of Directors approved the purchase of 10.7 acres of land, located just north of the Grass Valley Park and within the Lacamas Meadows Planned Residential Development, for $5.2 million “or the amount derived following an amended appraisal to be completed upon the construction of certain improvements by October 2006.” The parcel has already been pre-approved by the city as the site of a future elementary school. Before a school can be built, funding must be secured through voter approval of a capital projects bond issue. A committee of citizens and staff will begin a facilities study shortly after the first of the year to look at options for addressing continued growth.

Clark County seeks Planning Commission applicants
Clark County is accepting applications and nominations for appointments to the Planning Commission. The commission is a seven-member group that makes recommendations to the county commissioners on land-use planning, zoning and development in rural areas and other areas outside of any city limits. Terms are up to six years. Anyone interested should submit a letter of interest and resume by Jan. 9 to Jennifer Clark in the commissioners office, P.O. Box 5000, Vancouver, WA 98666-5000.

D&C Briefs
Corps completes phase one of channel improvement work
The first phase of the Columbia River Channel Improvement Project was completed earlier this month, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said. Phase one consisted of channel improvement work to deepen the lower 18 miles of the Columbia River and dredging work in 10 miles of the channel about 100 miles up river. More than 2.6 million cubic yards of sand has been removed in the first 25 percent of the project. The Corps awarded an $8.7 million contract in May to Illinois-based Great Lakes Dredge and Dock Co. to perform the work.

Clark Chamber recognizes innovative businesses
The Clark County Chamber of Commerce honored six businesses for its second annual Best-In-County awards event, recognizing innovations in visibility, networking, public advocacy, business services, training and entrepreneurship.

The visibility award went to iQ Credit Union for its Campus Branch Program. Hot Ovations Communications Coaching & Training Co. was the honoree for the Best-In-County networking award. Goldman and Associates, along with The Red Lion at the Quay, were awarded the Best-In-County Public Advocacy Awards for their work in creating jobs for individuals with disabilities and for minorities. The Best-In-County business services award was presented to GT Multimedia LLC. Ryonet Corp. received the training award for its training and hiring of local residents. Total Merchant Concepts was awarded the Best-In-County entrepreneur award.

IRS cuts mileage-deduction rate
With the level of gasoline prices falling, The Internal Revenue Service reduced the rate workers can claim for using personal vehicles for business to 44.5 cents per mile. In September, the agency raised the rate 8 cents to 48.5 cents per mile when the prices inched above $3 per gallon nationwide. The new rate goes into effect Jan. 1.

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